What risks do you run when you follow a quest for popularity or even celebrity? Envy is right at the top of the list, and today I’ll offer 8 different signs that your need for external validation is running too high, and 6 more that reflect that envy has taken hold of your mind and heart. Envy is defined as believing yourself to be worthy of what you perceive others getting and your behavior then can become governed by that poisonous belief. We’ll talk about the need for all of us to have a balance between what validation we receive externally with what we’re able to give ourselves internally – and when those are out of balance, what you can do about it!

Then the third thing we’ll focus on is celebrity. Does being well known have a downside? Here’s what Tim Ferriss, whose podcast has been downloaded 700 M times, has to say about the fame he’s achieved, like it or not.  “If you suddenly had 100,000 or 1,000,000 or 10,000,000 more followers, what might happen? I thought I knew, and I was naive”.

The listener voicemail this week is from a man whose brother is depressed but will do nothing about it. You can hear his concern and sense of helplessness in his voicemail – and I’ll do my best to try to offer some ideas.

So today in this episode sponsored by the #1 online therapy provider, BetterHelp, we’re talking about the quest to be known – to be recognized by many – how you can know that you’ve become envious – the difference between internal and external validation (and how a balance of both is really great) – all of that! And what  megapodcaster Tim Ferris might say… welcome to the 288th episode of SW!

Here are the signs of being too needy or dependent on external validation:

  • You scroll through others FB/tiktok/Instagram and compare their feedback to yours.
  • You are almost constantly checking your own numbers or ‘likes’
  • You bring up your own work with others without being asked.
  • You begin to alter your life so that it ‘looks’ better on social media – or if social media isn’t involved, you spend time worrying that your life doesn’t seem “special” enough.
  • The bulk of your time is spent trying to meet or exceed the expectations of others (this is very true in what’s called socially-prescribed perfectionism and is highly destructive.”
  • You discount or deny your fear of disappointing others. Or being seen as having made a mistake.
  • You begin to hide your insecurity by drinking more or using drugs.
  • You’ve had tough – very tough – childhood experiences or traumas that you don’t disclose or you’ve never worked through.

And here’s now it can  move into very ugly envy.

  • You aren’t happy for others when they achieve success.
  • Another person’s success makes you feel unhappy. I’ll take this even farther.
  • You feel the need to diminish someone else’s success. You’ll say something about them that’s harsh or belittling.
  • You judge others negatively.
  • You’re happy when others face setbacks.
  • You surround yourself with other envious people so you get validation.

Important Links:

BetterHelp, the #1 online therapy provider, has a special offer for you now!

Interesting interview with the actress who plays Lady Whistledown/Penelope in Bridgerton.

blogpost by Tim Ferriss about what you may really get from fame

SelfWork Episode 010 on loving someone with depression

You can hear more about this and many other topics by listening to my podcast, SelfWork with Dr. Margaret Rutherford. Subscribe to my website and receive my weekly newsletter including a blog post and podcast! If you’d like to join my FaceBook closed group, then click here and answer the membership questions! Welcome!

My book entitled Perfectly Hidden Depression has been published and you can order here! Its message is specifically for those with a struggle with strong perfectionism which acts to mask underlying emotional pain. But the many self-help techniques described can be used by everyone who chooses to begin to address emotions long hidden away that are clouding and sabotaging your current life. And it’s available in paperback, eBook or as an audiobook!

And there’s another way to send me a message! You can record by clicking below and ask your question or make a comment. You’ll have 90 seconds to do so and that time goes quickly. By recording, you’re giving SelfWork (and me) permission to use your voice on the podcast. I’ll look forward to hearing from you!

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